Tommy got out yesterday and the kid doesn't remember him. He's got two lousy hours, she says. Then they're gone, across the water.
He talks. The oblivious kid chases and flees junk-filled waves in that futile cycle.
"How ‘bout an ice cream?" he suggests (he hasn't tasted one in six damn years), taking the kid's small hand.
Cold, sandy fingers wriggle out of his grip.
The kid, preoccupied with a plastic bag lapping the shore, fetches it out and asks, "Those fingers inside?"
He looks at two severed hands in the bag...
"No, just starfish, got stuck. Washed up."
Author biography: Scott Dingley is a London-based writer of crime, horror and western fiction.